Developing and nurturing yourself is extremely important in your life. As a result of emotions such as depression, greed, sadness, etc., people may behave in a manner that is not consistent with one’s true self. This can get you off balance and you begin to neglect some parts of yourself. Thus, it is important to take a look inside to determine how you can continue to grow by increasing your self-awareness, forming healthy habits and becoming more focused. Here are some strategies that you can adapt into your daily lifestyle.
Step 1: Get in-tuned to your inner self: Throughout your life, it is essential to focus inward to establish who you are and where you are going. When you take time to reflect and focus inward, it gives you the opportunity to concentrate on things that are happening in your life. To help you focus, you should establish daily rituals such as prayer, meditation, yoga, etc. to help you stay focused and get in-tuned to your inner self. By doing this, you will be able to become more in touch with your emotions, improve communications, know your life’s purpose and treat your body with kindness because you will be more focused.
Step 2: Manage your emotions: Being aware of your past and current pains (e.g., fears, insecurities, rejections) can be frightening. When people keep things inside (hidden away) it often leads to addictions, compulsions, fixations and/or obsessions. Make sure you examine your beliefs and feelings and know that every word or phrase you say is an affirmation. One exercise you can do to get rid of current or past pains is to:
- Determine the origin (not the symptoms) of pain/discomfort
- Examine your beliefs that you developed as a result of this experience
- Determine how you can help others based on what you learned from this experience
- Develop specific steps that you can take to change this belief or attitude
Step 3: Take care of your physical body: The physical body houses the spirit and inside your physical body are your emotions. Your physical body will remain with you throughout your life on Earth. As a result, loving, respecting, taking care of and accepting the physical body is important in your development. Thus, selecting healthy food options, exercising regularly and managing your stress levels is imperative as you journey throughout life.
Step 4: Effectively communicate with others: Social interactions occur from the time a person is born until death. Over time, these interactions shape behavior. Social interactions with others are an important part of human development. Nevertheless, relationships can sometimes be threatened by individuals’ psychological problems, selfishness, political and economic inequalities. This may cause conflict. Make sure you communicate your feelings to others by:
- Communicating your thoughts and feelings in a non confrontational manner
- Showing you have a genuine interest for others even though you may not agree with them
- Acknowledging your strengths and limitations
- Being aware and respectful of others differences
- Showing positive body language; you should smile, make eye contact, and manage your moods
Step 5: Engage your passion: Be clear about what you are passionate about and make sure you are actively pursuing that passion by engaging in volunteer activities related to that passion or working in a career related to your passion.
Each individual controls the directions he takes in his life. The decisions you make today will have an impact on your entire life. In essence, you are the only one who can save you! Often times, we look outside ourselves for someone to save us, but change begins with you!
About the Author: Dr. Jessica is an Organizational Psychologist who offers various training and coaching services designed to enhance youth and adults mind, body and spirit self-awareness. To find out more about the services we provide, go to drjessicablalock.com.
© Dr. Jessica, 2008
Published in The Historic West End, 2009